Thank God You're Here (UK TV series)

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This article is about the British version. For the original Australian version, see Thank God You're Here. For the American version, see Thank God You're Here (U.S. TV series).
Thank God You're Here
Genre Improvisational comedy
Presented by Paul Merton
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of series 1
No. of episodes 6
Location(s) The London Studios
Running time 60 minutes (inc. adverts)
Production company(s) Talkback Thames
Distributor FremantleMedia
Original network ITV
Picture format 16:9
Original release 12 January (2008-01-12) – 16 February 2008 (2008-02-16)
Related shows Thank God You're Here

Thank God You're Here was a improvisational comedy game show based on the original Australian show with the same name. In the show, four guests are placed into a scene they have no knowledge about and have to improvise. The series is hosted by Paul Merton, who also acts as judge and performs his own improvised scene.


The UK pilot, made for ITV by talkbackTHAMES, was announced in mid-2007.[1] The pilot was recorded on 12 November 2007 at The London Studios,[2] with Merton as the show's host (with him also featuring in a one-off improvisational scene of his own). The series started airing on 12 January 2008 on ITV.[3] The show delivered below-average ratings for ITV in its timeslot.


Denotes the Winner


The celebrity guests were Clive Anderson, Phil Nichol, Kirsten O'Brien and John Thomson, all of whom also played in a group scene at the end of the show. Backstage interviews with each guest after their scene were conducted by Olivia Lee. However, in the series no such interviews take place.

Episode 1: 12 January 2008[edit]

Guest star Scenario Total viewers Audience share
Hamish Blake Car mechanic returning home to be confronted by his multiple wives. 2.9m[4] 12%[4]
Fern Britton Medium attempting to contact the dead.
Ben Miller Star Trek-like spaceship captain returning to his ship.
John Thomson A Member of Parliament appearing on a chat show discussing his last year in politics.
Warm Ups Jockeys talking at a stewards enquiry / People at a Dating service
Paul Merton A secret agent returning to headquarters after a mission in Geneva.
Group scene Four nuns discussing what they will give up for lent and praying to God.

Episode 2: 19 January 2008[edit]

Clive Anderson A flight Wing Commander discussing an upcoming bombing mission with his fellow pilots. 2.7m[5] 12%[5]
Hamish Blake A recently deceased tennis player trying to talk his way into heaven.
Sally Lindsay A shopaholic confronted by her husband about her huge credit card bills.
Michael McIntyre The captain of a cruise liner confronted by angry passengers.
Warm Ups News readers discussing the Stock Market / Being questioned at a police station for speeding
Paul Merton A butler discussing his job performance with his upper-class employees.
Group scene Four fast-food outlet staff members in a team meeting. Clive couldn't fit through the door, due to a burger costume he was wearing

Episode 3: 26 January 2008[edit]

Marcus Brigstocke A surgeon examining a seizure patient 1.9m[6] 10%[6]
Lee Mack A bronze-medalist Olympic athlete visiting a class of schoolchildren
Jennie McAlpine A 19th Century daughter meeting with an upper-class gentleman
Phil Nichol An estranged cowboy returning to the local tavern
Warm Ups A dentist working on a child patient with his mother / An employee having discussion with boss
Paul Merton A clown who had given a bad performance in the circus
Group scene Four criminals planning to steal a priceless painting from a castle

Episode 4: 2 February 2008[edit]

James Corden A morning radio show host with issues 2.3m[7] 11%[7]
Vernon Kay A dog whisperer instructing a class of owners
Phil Nichol A scientist on a children's television show
Kirsten O'Brien A girl who threw a party while her parents were away
Warm Ups TV chef being interviewed / Nursery school teacher being questioned by inspector
Paul Merton A golf-playing husband at marriage counseling
Group scene A bobsleigh team debrief

Episode 5: 9 February 2008[edit]

Rufus Hound A joyrider who has just crashed into someone's living room 1.9m[8] 10%[8]
Lee Mack Police inspector discussing a serial killer
Richard Wilson A toff on a picnic
Claudia Winkleman A boarding school girl having a chat with her headmistress
Warm Ups Cheese Waiters / Owners of a Nursing Home in a Documentary Interview
Paul Merton Team leader in a snow expedition
Group scene All are obese and discussing their weight gains at a group meeting

Episode 6: 16 February 2008[edit]

Guest star Scenario
Marcus Brigstocke A cricketer speaking at a press conference
Steve Furst A student being confronted by angry housemates.
Rufus Hound A newly-wed on a honeymoon at a caravan park.
John Thomson A Roman general reporting to the Emperor.
Warm Ups Negotiating with a suicidal man / Visiting their Dying Grandfather.
Paul Merton An upper-class gentleman on board the Titanic.
Group scene A super hero meeting.

Ensemble Cast[9][edit]

  • Tara Flynn
  • Cicely Giddings
  • Nick Haverson
  • Rufus Jones
  • Richard Katz
  • Dan Mersh
  • Aimee Parkes


  1. ^ "News - Paul Merton plans ITV improv show". British Sitcom Guide. Retrieved 2007-07-27. 
  2. ^ "Thank God You're Here". Lost In TV. Retrieved 2008-01-25. 
  3. ^ "News - ITV reveals 2008 comedy line-up". British Sitcom Guide. 15 November 2007. Retrieved 2007-11-17. 
  4. ^ a b "No script... and no viewers". Chortle. 14 January 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-25. 
  5. ^ a b Holmwood, Leigh (21 January 2008). "Merton falls flat in gloomy night for ITV". The Guardian. Retrieved 2008-01-25. 
  6. ^ a b Tryhorn, Chris (28 January 2008). "TV Ratings - January 26". The Guardian. Retrieved 2008-01-28. 
  7. ^ a b Holmwood, Leigh (4 February 2008). "TV Ratings - February 2". The Guardian. Retrieved 2008-02-04. 
  8. ^ a b Tryhorn, Chris (11 February 2008). "TV Burp smells sweet for ITV". The Guardian. Retrieved 2008-02-11. 
  9. ^ "Internet Movie Database". Retrieved 2011-02-27. 

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